450. O God, Our Father, We Come

Text Information
First Line: O God, our Father, we come into your presence
Title: O God, Our Father, We Come
Author: John H. Kromminga (1957)
Meter: 12 10 11 10
Language: English
Publication Date: 1987
Topic: Love: God's Love to Us; Praise & Adoration; Profession of Faith (10 more...)
Source: Psalter Hymnal, 1987, rev.
Copyright: Text and music © 1987, CRC Publications
Tune Information
Harmonizer: Dale Grotenhuis (1984)
Composer: Claire Kromminga (1957)
Meter: 12 10 11 10
Key: G Major
Copyright: Text and music © 1987, CRC Publications

Text Information:

Scripture References:
st. 1 = Ps. 100:4
st. 2 = Ps. 115:1
st. 3 = Ps. 46:1
st. 4 = Matt. 6:13

John H. Kromminga (b. Grundy Center, lA, 1918; d. Grand Rapids, MI, 1994) wrote this text in 1956, the same year he became president of Calvin Seminary, Grand Rapids. He and his wife, Claire, who composed the tune, submitted this text in the centennial hymn contest held as a part of the 100th anniversary celebration of the Christian Reformed Church in 1957. Marie J. Post's "O Lord, Beneath Thy Guiding Hand" set to an Adrian Hartog tune (1959 PsalterHymnal 486) was the winning entry. But the Psalter Hymnal Revision Committee chose to publish the Kromminga hymn, not the Post/Hartog hymn, in the 1987 Psalter Hymnal.

The first three stanzas reveal a Trinitarian pattern of praise: to God the Father, whom we have come to worship (st. 1); to Jesus Christ, who died for our sin (st. 2); and to the Holy Spirit, who guides us by the Word (st. 3). The final stanza affirms that our praise to God–our doxology–is orthodox (right praise) only when it is accompanied by our daily obedience in witness and service.

Kromminga studied at Calvin College and Calvin Seminary and received his Th.D.from Princeton Seminary, Princeton, New Jersey, in 1946. He was a pastor in three Christian Reformed Church congregations before he joined his alma mater, Calvin Seminary, as professor of church history (1952-1983) and then as president (1956-). After his retirement in 1983 he served as president of International Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. He wrote many articles and four books, including The Christian Reformed Church: A Study in Orthodoxy (1949).

Liturgical Use:
General hymn of praise for many occasions (like the anniversary service for which it was written); profession of faith; marriage; ordination; stanzas 1-3 at the beginning of worship, stanza 4 at the end of worship.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

Claire Ottenhoff Kromminga (b. Chicago, IL, 1919; d. Grand Rapids, MI, 1995) first composed CENTENNIAL PRAYER in a music theory class at Calvin College in 1939 and then revised it for submission in the 1957 contest (see above). Kromminga studied at Chicago Music College and received a BA from Calvin College, Grand Rapids. She was an elementary school teacher from 1941 to 1944 in Muskegon, Michigan, and Newton, New Jersey, and then returned to Michigan.

Dale Grotenhuis (PHH 4) prepared the harmonization for the 1987 Psalter Hymnal. Sing stanzas 1-3 in harmony and stanza 4 in unison.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

MIDI file: MIDI Preview
(Faith Alive Christian Resources)

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